Wilhelm Röntgen, a German mechanical engineer and physicist, observed a peculiar glow on a coated screen in his office while testing if cathode rays could pass through glass. He dubbed this glow of light “X-ray” as a nod to its enigmatic nature. With X-rays, physicians were able to effectively examine bodies and diseases in a new light (quite literally) for the first time in history.
It turns out that X-rays are somewhat like light waves. X-rays and light waves are both forms of electromagnetic radiation, but X-rays travel at much higher speeds than light waves and are invisible to the human eye. Because X-rays cannot be absorbed by our skin, muscle, fat, fibrous tissue, blood vessels, or other supporting tissue, they travel through the body, making our bones visible on a screen.
Below, this imaging facility in Hammond, Indiana is going to discuss everything you’ll need to know about medical x-rays, helping you understand why they are such a highly effective diagnostic method.
The Advantages of Digital X-Rays
X-rays reveal things that could otherwise go undetected — or undiagnosed — in the medical field. X-rays can diagnose everything from broken bones to breast cancer (mammography). Digital X-rays taken in an X-ray facility inHammond, Indiana remove the guesswork by allowing for quick diagnosis with instant results.
Physicians can detect diseases in their early stages and, in many cases, avoid invasive surgeries thanks to this groundbreaking technology. X-rays also provide a view of the affected area before surgery, preventing surgeons from performing procedures “blindly.” Before the advent of medical X-rays, surgeons would have to perform exploratory surgeries to determine what was wrong in patients involved in an accident and who had severe injuries, said Thomas R. Ohlhaber, physicist and deputy director of the FDA Division of Mammography Quality and Radiation Programs.
Digital X-rays, much like the transition from polaroid to digital photography, eliminate the “waiting game” by eliminating development time. This allows physicians to access information almost instantaneously, which is highly valuable when a life is on the line. These digital images can also be transferred easily, allowing them to be shared from one physician to another when a referral or second opinion is required.
Are There Risks Associated with X-Rays?
While there are several advantages of digital X-rays, many people in Hammond, Indiana are concerned about the safety of X-rays. They are, in effect, a type of radiation exposure that can result in mutations in genes that ultimately lead to cancer growth. However, because the dose of radiation emitted by digital X-rays is minimal, sources such as Mayo Clinic believe that the benefits significantly exceed the risks. Furthermore, digital X-rays emit 70- to 80% less radiation than traditional film radiography.
Aside from the negative health consequences of traditional film radiography, this diagnostic method also produces environmentally harmful wastes like lead foil and films, which must be disposed of properly and carefully. As a result, many physicians, radiologists, and technicians have opted for “greener” digital X-ray imaging over traditional film radiography.
Looking for Faster and More Efficient X-Ray Scans in Hammond, Indiana? Visit NW Indiana ER & Hospital.
The radiologists at NW Indiana ER & Hospital use cutting-edge imaging and laboratory equipment to provide crystal-clear X-ray images that are far superior to those captured on film in past years. As the top-rated imaging facility in Hammond, Indiana, we provide patients with the convenient and reliable medical attention they need. If you have any questions about what to expect during your X-ray imaging, or if you would like to arrange a digital X-ray appointment, please contact us today at (219) 554-9911 or fill out an online form to get in touch with our staff.
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